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Meehan, K.B. Levy, K.N. Clarkin, J.F. (2012). Construct Validity of a Measure of Affective Communication in Psychotherapy. Psychoanal. Psychol., 29(2):145-165.

(2012). Psychoanalytic Psychology, 29(2):145-165


Construct Validity of a Measure of Affective Communication in Psychotherapy

Kevin B. Meehan, Ph.D., Kenneth N. Levy, Ph.D. and John F. Clarkin, Ph.D.

This study evaluated the psychometric properties of a therapist measure for evaluating the affective communication created between the patient and therapist during the initial stages of treatment. The Affective Communication Questionnaire (ACQ) was administered to a sample of 81 therapists, each rating a single patient, and principal component analysis indicated the measure has coherent dimensions with strong internal consistency. The construct validity of the ACQ was then established in a sample of 16 therapists rating 73 patients diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. The measure was found to have a strong relationship to the related constructs of transference, countertransference, and affect experience in predicted directions. The measure also was found to have a modest relationship to independent assessments of patient functioning, most notably more negative affect was significantly related to more odd or eccentric (Cluster A) and less anxious or fearful (Cluster C) personality disorder symptoms, and greater narrative coherence. Differences in affective communication

as a function of treatment type were also evaluated. The clinical and research implications of the findings are discussed.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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